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Scientists are one step closer to spray-on solar power. Instead of traditional bulky solar cells encased in glass–which can be awkward to put in places other than a roof, and take a lot of energy to produce–we may someday be able to easily spray paint low-cost, low-energy solar cells on everything from a pair of jeans, to a car, to the side of a skyscraper.
Research on painted solar cells isn’t new, but it has been challenging to make these solar cells efficient enough to actually be useful. Now, scientists in a lab at the University of Sheffield have discovered a trick to making them work better: A material called perovskite, which can be almost as efficient as silicon, but cheaper to make and, in theory, more environmentally friendly.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.